KNOWLEDGE: Blog digest March 2017

Each month, the Critical Fundraising blog presents a digest of the best fundraising-related blogs and articles that have adopted a critical fundraising mode of thought. Inclusion in this digest does not indicate that Rogare agrees with any arguments presented, only that we thought they made a good argument.

Is it time to reassess donors’ rights?

Nonprofit Pro

Is the AFP’s Donor Bill of Right equipped to protect donors in the digital age? Pamela Barden, consultant and Rogare Advisory Panel member, thinks it might be time for a review.

Choice quote:

“I, an active fundraiser, had never heard of the E-Donor Bill of Rights until a few years ago, when one of my students came across it during an online search for an assignment.”

Fundraising and rights balancing – what does it really mean?

The Fundraising Collective

Following the death of her nephew last year, Rogare Advisory Panel member Margaret Clift McNulty gives very personal view on what it means to her to balance the needs of beneficiaries and donors.

Choice quote:

“When Adam needed a stem cell donor, I suddenly realised how important the work of the Anthony Nolan Trust was. Why had I never registered as a stem cell donor? Why hadn’t everyone? Why did I not know it was a thing? If they spent millions and millions on advertising their stem cell register it wouldn’t have seemed enough to me right then. Stuff overheads. Stuff admin costs.”

Fundraisers and ‘connected spenders’

The Agitator (paywall).

‘Connected spenders’ from up and coming economies will dominate consumer spending by the mid-20s. Tom Belford asks if fundraisers are ready for them.

Choice quote:

“Fundraisers — all of us together — are barely a tiny dinghy bobbing along on an ocean of consumerism. We’re not going to influence the currents or tides; we’re just along for the ride. And we must trim our sails accordingly.”

Disce aut Discede: learn or leave!

Reinier Fundraising blog

Reinier Spruit has a message for fundraisers who are not learning from experience, who can’t develop themselves and their fundraising programme: please leave the sector.

Choice quote:

“You obviously read a blog from time to time, so I’m probably preaching to the choir here, but how many of your fundraising colleagues never read anything, or go anywhere to refresh their thinking?”

Only one charity shop on each high street? No thanks

Civil Society Fundraising

BBC radio recently questioned whether charity shops should be restricted to one per main shopping street. David Ainsworth outlines the many reasons why the answer is no.

Choice quote:

“On the other hand, charities have to face up to the reality of the situation. It’s no use blaming small retailers for feeling it’s unfair. Nor can you really blame local people who want a high street full of variety.”

Philanthropy scholarship and practice – bridging the divide

Alliance Magazine

Scholars have a reputation for raising more questions than they provide answers. Marta Rey-Garcia asks if the emerging field of philanthropy scholarship provide value for policy and practice?

Choice quote:

“Although researchers need freedom to keep asking more, only returning more questions than answers, or just unintelligible answers, is likely to result in frustration and futility. The idea is that all involved – donors, scholars, practitioners and policymakers – manage to cross the bridge in conversation together.”

Like George Michael, we’re all private philanthropists

The Guardian

Much was been made of the George Michael’s secret donations. But Beth Breeze says people on lower incomes give proportionately more than wealthy donors without any fanfare.

Choice quote:

“The [media] coverage of Michael’s philanthropy seems to suggest that he is no exception to the rule that as far as the media is concerned, the best donor is a dead donor.”

Stop tax breaks to donors who give to influence policy

Chronicle of Philanthropy (paywall)

David Callahan expounds some of the ideas in his new book about power and philanthropy.

Choice quote:

“The nonprofit world’s vaunted pluralism is also overstated. By and large, the ideas that draw significant funding are ones that fall within the parameters deemed acceptable by foundations and major donors. These wealth holders are not as diverse in their views as the public writ large — not by a long shot.”

Giving in the age of outrage

Huffington Post

For some people, ‘slactivism’ has been replaced by ‘actigiving’ as they find the best way to register their outrage is to make a donation. Blackbaud’s Steve MacLaughlin says the challenge for nonprofits is how to keep these donors engaged.

Choice quote:

“What we are witnessing is not a revolution, but instead an evolution of how episodic giving has changed over time.”

Diversity in fundraising

Why are there so few male fundraisers?

AFP blog

About 75 per cent of fundraisers in the USA are female. Based on new research it has conducted, the AFP says there is a need to attract more men into fundraising.

Choice quote:

“Just as there are a number of reasons that lead to a lack of men in the profession, there is no one particular way forward. But it’s an especially pressing issue as Baby Boomers continue to retire, leading to what is expected to be significant demand for nonprofit professionals and especially fundraisers in the near future.”

AFP’s call for more men – on International Women’s Day 2017

Beth Ann Locke’s blog

Fundraising consultant Beth Ann Locke takes issue not just with content of AFP’s call for more men, but also its timing.

Choice quote:

“Do we need more men? I don’t know – and this article makes no attempt to answer that…the way this article is written feeds into some issues of power and privilege without addressing them – the same issues that some that our nonprofits are fighting against!

Fundraising is female: thoughts on #AFPIWDFAIL

The Storytelling Non-Profit

Vanessa Chase Lockshin argues that AFP’s calls for more men in fundraising are couched in terms that will take the profession backwards.

Choice quote:

“As a female fundraiser and business owner, I take immense pride in being a part of an industry that is predominantly female. I mean it’s very rare, it’s something that you would think that they would want to really honor and celebrate but instead, we’re asking why are there not more men and we’re examining why men are uncomfortable in this profession.”

Why are the so few non-white faces in fundraising?

The Fundraiser

Samir Savant explores the lack of ethnic diversity in the third sector, asking why is this the case, why do we care, and what can be done to fix things?

Choice quote:

“BAME fundraisers often feel a sense of isolation in their place of work, and no support for specific issues they might face. It is a stereotype, but one based in truth, that most Black and Asian staff working in the third sector are in accounts, IT or facilities.”

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